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JimLawyer
JimLawyer, Solicitor
Category: Property Law
Satisfied Customers: 5980
Experience:  Senior Associate Solicitor
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I am having trouble with my landlord/the letting agent. I

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Hello, I am having trouble with my landlord/the letting agent. I have multiple issues.
Assistant: What steps have you taken so far? Have you prepared or filed any paperwork?
Customer: First, in our contract we specifies windows need to be operational, they only finally repaired the last window in October, 3 years after moving in. Second it takes multiple emails and chasing to get a repair acknowledged, most repairs taking well over 90 days to fix. Secondly, we let them know in september that we wanted to move out in November, as we have a 2 month notice period, but as we are buying our first house we couldn't lock down a specific date until later, they didn't reply for 2 weeks so I chased and they said they need a specific date, I explained why I couldn't do that yet and what options we would have for a shorter notice period, to be flexible of move date etc. They said they would need to talk to the landlord. I kept chasing for a response and recieved nothing. We got our date and I asked to end the tenancy a couple of weeks early, our lease ends Dec 31, they just said no and we need to give 2 months but they've know about it since sept
Assistant: Where is the house located?
Customer: London
Assistant: Anything else you want the Lawyer to know before I connect you?
Customer: I also contacted then in august about mice, have still been chasing and even found a mouse in our silverware drawer

Hello, my name is Jim and I am a qualified lawyer happy to help you today.

By law, landlords must ensure the property is in good repair under S.11 of the Landlord and Tenant Act 1985.

If they do not, they face prosecution by the local council and can be fined. It would also be breach of contract on their part and you would be within your rights to terminate the tenancy agreement.

The Local Authority Environmental Health Officers have powers under the Housing Act 2004. They have a duty to ensure that properties in their area are in a habitable condition, and will serve improvement notices on landlords of properties which are assessed, under the new Housing Health and Safety Rating System as having ‘category 1 hazards’.

Similar powers are available to Local Authorities under the Environmental Protection Act 1990 if the property is considered a threat to public health.

The presence of mice is a health hazard so really you can tell the landlord you will be moving sooner given the notice period and if they refuse, you will report them to the local council's housing department for all of the issues you have had with the property.

If the landlord and agency maintain their stance then I would recommend that you contact your local council (the housing department).

You can allege breach of contract for the reasons stated above - technically this means you can move out as soon as you want to.

I hope this helps - if you can please accept the answer and give me a 5 star rating (there should be a button at the top of your screen to do this), I can answer follow up Q&A's at no extra charge and Just Answer will credit me for helping you today.

Many thanks,

Jim

Customer: replied 7 days ago.
Thank you so much, this does help. Do you have any recommendations as to how I can word this, also how to ensure they do not try and claim this from our deposit?

They can only claim damages from your deposit. Was the deposit put in to a deposit protection scheme?

Customer: replied 7 days ago.
Yes it was, they've just been so rude and dismissive I am very nervous to push them.

OK, you would need to open a dispute regarding the deposit if the landlord refuses to return it to you.

There are three providers as follows (and you can check where your deposit is being held) :

https://www.depositprotection.com/im-a-tenant/im-reaching-the-end-of-a-tenancy/starting-deposit-repayment

https://custodial.tenancydepositscheme.com/tenants/how-do-i-get-my-deposit-back

https://www.mydeposits.co.uk/tenants/get-your-deposit-back/#

I hope I have helped.

Before you go please don't forget to rate the answer by clicking the 5 stars on screen and clicking submit.

Many thanks,

Jim

JimLawyer and other Property Law Specialists are ready to help you
Customer: replied 7 days ago.
Do you have any recommendations on how to word this to them?

If you use the template letter to them, just use the terminology I have used in the answer regarding the fact that landlords must ensure the property is in good repair under S.11 of the Landlord and Tenant Act 1985 and given they have not complied, you consider this is breach of contract on their part and you would be within your rights to terminate the tenancy agreement. You can also say that the landlord has duty to ensure that the property is in a habitable condition.